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game recap

Bruins lose to Panthers, fail to pad lead for second in Atlantic

Home winning streak ends at 12; Luongo makes 30 saves for Florida

by Matt Kalman / Correspondent

Luongo flashes the leather

FLA@BOS: Luongo snares Chara's blistering wrister

Zdeno Chara snaps a heavy wrister from the circle on net, but Roberto Luongo flashes the leather to make a great glove stop in the 1st

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BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins failed to expand their lead for second place in the Atlantic Division when they lost to the Florida Panthers 4-1 at TD Garden on Saturday.

The Bruins (47-22-9), who have clinched a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, lead the third-place Toronto Maple Leafs by six points. Boston has four games remaining, including the next three on the road.

The Bruins' 12-game home winning streak and 14-game home point streaks ended (12-0-2).


[WATCH: All Panthers vs. Bruins highlights]


"It's always frustrating to lose," said Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask, who made 19 saves. "I mean we just go game by game and whatever happens happens. I think just all year we try to worry about where our game is and how we want to play. I think we played pretty tight defensively again today and the puck wasn't bouncing our way down the other end. And then it's a 4-1 loss, but hopefully we'll make this a good road trip and have clarity of whether we get the home ice or not and finish the season and start the playoffs."

Roberto Luongo made 30 saves, and Evgenii Dadonov scored two goals for the Panthers (35-32-12), who have won their past two games but have been eliminated from playoff contention.

Video: FLA@BOS: Dadonov powers rebound past Rask

"Every win feels nice," Luongo said. "I mean unfortunately it doesn't mean that much this time of year, but we're all professionals in here and we play to win hockey games and it doesn't matter what's at stake, you always want to be on the winning side."

Riley Sheahan scored on a tip just as a Florida power play expired at 13:37 of the first period for a 1-0 lead. Dryden Hunt's one-timer from the top of the right face-off circle hit Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo, changed direction, and then went off Sheahan.

Dadonov scored at 15:44 on a rebound of an Aaron Ekblad shot and the Panthers had a 2-0 lead at the end of the period despite being outshot 16-8.

"I think the key to the game though is [Luongo], what he did in the first period," Panthers coach Bob Boughner said. "I mean we could've been down 2-0 and that's the difference. We got some big saves at the right time and gave us a chance to get settled in this game. You get down 2-0, 3-0 against Boston, chances are game over. So Louie was the best player on the ice."

Noel Acciari made it 2-1 with a goal at 13:12 of the second period. Torey Krug passed to Acciari in the slot, where he scored on his second shot attempt. 

Video: FLA@BOS: Acciari stuffs backhander into the twine

Troy Brouwer scored shorthanded at 14:19 of the second to give Florida a 3-1 lead. Mike Matheson stripped the puck from David Pastrnak in the Florida end and sent Brouwer on a breakaway for a wrist shot.

Dadonov scored an empty-net goal at 17:41 of the third period for the 4-1 final.


They said it 

"These guys are fighting to the end. And it's no surprise. I think there is some character in that room, there's a lot of character in that room, and it's nice to see them coming together." -- Panthers coach Bob Boughner 

"We didn't have a lot of puck luck, clearly, around their net. It seemed like a few were destined to go in that didn't. You know they got a fortunate bounce on the first one. But at the end of the day, I don't think we did enough to overcome our poor puck luck to win the game, by getting inside and making sure that we finished some plays around the net. So that was a little disappointing that we weren't able to build off what Noel [Acciari's] line did to get us kind of back in the game." -- Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy 


Need to know

Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau had two assists to increase his NHL career points total to 355, moving him past Scott Mellanby (354) for third in Florida history. Huberdeau also moved into second on the Panthers assist list with 233, passing Olli Jokinen (231). … Krug's assist was his 45th of the season, tying his NHL career high the defenseman set last season.


What's next

Panthers: Host the Washington Capitals on Monday (7 p.m. ET; TVAS, FS-F, NBCSWA, NHL.TV)

Bruins: At the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)

Video: Dadonov scores twice as Panthers beat the Bruins, 4-1 

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